Started on July 19, 2024

Mental Capacity Act & Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards

This course describes in detail the many facets and procedures of the mental capacity act. This includes who the act affects, when it applies, how to assess capacity and the procedures that can be put in place in the home or workplace to ensure best practices are followed, and people are treated fairly at all times.

Mental capacity’ means being able to make your own decisions. The Mental Capacity Act (MCA) 2005 applies to those who works in health and social care and are involved in the care, treatment or support of people aged 16 and over who are unable to make all or some decisions for themselves. It applies to those who lack this mental capacity and rely on others to make legal, financial and practical decisions on their behalf.

There are numerous factors that can lead to a person’s inability to make decisions. These can include a stroke or brain injury, a mental health problem, dementia, a learning disability, confusion, drowsiness or unconsciousness because of an illness, and substance use.

Who is this course for?

This course is primarily for those in the healthcare professions, who access the mental capacity of patients in their care. This includes, but is not limited to doctors, nurses, carers, psychologists and social workers.

The course can also be useful for a family member who need to access mental capacity on behalf of their relative.

Protection of the Individual

The law operates on the assumption that everyone has the capacity to make their own decisions if they have access to enough information and are given the time and support to absorb the information. This protects the rights of the individual to be self determining and free to make decisions, or be involved in decisions, that affect them.

An important aspect of the Act is that it puts the individual who lacks capacity at the heart of the decision making process, and places a strong emphasis on supporting and enabling the individual to make their own decisions. The Act was created in 2005,to protect basic human rights which include:

  • the right to life,
  • the right to prohibition of torture, inhumane or degrading treatment,
  • the right to liberty and
  • the right to a home, private life and correspondence.

This piece of legislation ensures these rights are upheld and safeguards in place to ensure that the best interests of an individual are maintained at all times.

The Five Principles of the Act

There are five key principles that form the basis of the Mental Capacity Act. The course looks at each principle in depth, to illustrate how each should be applied in practice. These five principles are:

  • A presumption of capacity – every adult has the right to make his or her own decisions and must be assumed to have the mental capacity to do so unless otherwise proved
  • Support to make decisions – a person must be given all practicable help and support before they are regarded as unable to decide for themselves
  • Unwise decisions – Making what might be regarded as an unwise decision is not the same as being unable to make a decision. This does not mean the person lacks capacity.
  • Best interests – all decision made under the Act on behalf of a person who lacks capacity must be done in their best interests
  • Least restrictive option – anything done to, for or on behalf of a person who lacks capacity should be the least restrictive on their basic human rights.

Deprivation of Liberty

The deprivation of liberty safeguards was set out in the Code of Practice laid before Parliament by the Lord Chancellor on the 13th of June 2008 in accordance with the mental capacity act 2005. These safeguards provide a framework for approving the deprivation of liberty for people who lack the capacity to consent to treatment or care in either a hospital or care home setting.

The deprivation of liberty safeguards is the procedure prescribed in law that states when it’s necessary to deprive a patient who may lack capacity of their liberty in order to keep them safe from harm. The Mental Capacity Act, in certain circumstances, allows restrictions and restraints to be used that can deprive a person of their liberty, but only if they are in the best interest of a person who lacks capacity to make the decision themselves.

By the end of the course, you will understand the relevant safeguards and how they may affect you in the workplace.

Course ContentModule
What is the Mental Capacity Act2
Assessing Capacity3
The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards4

CPD Units ‘2’

Online assessment in this mental capacity and deprivation of liberty course is carried out by a series of multiple choice questions. Candidates require 70% correct answers to secure a pass.  PDF certificate will be sent directly to your inbox.  Hard copy certificate on requrest.  Duration: 75 minutes (Note: This is based on the amount of video content shown and is rounded off.  It does not account in any way for loading time or thinking time on the questions).

Related courses to Mental Capacity and Deprivation of Liberty  include
Safeguarding Adults
Dementia Awareness
Person Centred Care Training

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